Hand Shaped Surfboards

Big Dipper


It all started with a dream of finding empty, remote waves.
Matt was born and raised in Switzerland and as for every land locked waterman surfing meant travelling. Over the past twelve years the journey included adventures along Europe's Atlantic Coast, Morocco, Southeast Asia, Hawaii, Mexico and Nicaragua.

In 2008 Matt moved out to the coast and settled in Vancouver, BC. Surfing in the Pacific Northwest came with colder temperatures and thicker wetsuits. Once adjusted to the rougher climate, the entire surf potential between Vancouver Island and California became accessible. Getting our toes wet still meant travelling, so no road trip is too long, no ferry is too expensive (although honestly they are...) and not even snow on the beach could stop us from chasing waves.
The next step ahead is about accessing surf that can't be reached by car. We dream of trips along Canada's rugged west coast, riding boards that we've built with our own hands. It is about moving away from the mainstream surf industry to creating our own gear built the way we see surfing. In 2014 we met Nate and Mitch from Shaper Studios and started with our first board.

This board is designed for the gentle and rather flat waves we encounter here on an average day. Every element of the board is designed with the conditions and surfer in mind. The wide longboard shaped nose makes it easy to catch waves and gives the board plenty stability. The board is not too wide so can still be carried easily. The blank is shaped to match fat waves. It has plenty of volume providing uplift for easy paddling. The 70's style rounded tail and the single fin give the board an old school feel making it turn gracefully in long drawn out arcs.

60+ hours of work

Nootka Surf Shop Setup
Nootka Surf Big Dipper at the Beach
Nootka Surf Glassing at the shop
Nootka Surf M doing the fiberglass job
Nootka Surf J placing the logos

After the board was shaped it needed a face. This is where Janine's skills as a graphic designer came to play. Finding the right brand name was probably the hardest thing - we wanted it to be somewhat meaningful and have a connection to the birthplace of the board; shaped in Vancouver with average water temperatures around 9 degrees Celsius. Ever since we moved to BC we wanted to explore and surf at less accessible locations. Nootka, a remote island on BC's west coast, is one of the spots on our bucket list. Nootka is also a type of a cypress native to the pacific northwest.
So the brand was born, but the board itself was still to be named.
We often go camping with our old camperized Chevy van and love to star gaze at night. One of our favorite constellations is the big dipper. We figured that name goes well with dipping in the pacific ocean. In our mother tongue it is also referred as the "big bear" - another relation to BC.
The journey continues and we wonder where the stars will lead us next in the endless search for empty waves.

Nootka Surf Bear Branding
Nootka Surf Big Dipper Branding

unlimited hours of pleasure

Nootka Surf First Dip with Big Dipper
Nootka Surf proud M
Nootka Surf proud J
Nootka Surf Stamp